Saturday, January 21, 2012

Pre-K Randomness and Reflections

One thing you will notice about my tot school and preschool corner posts is that there is generally no flow and they are often quite different from other similar "schools" in the blogosphere...we may do a "theme" for one day, but I rarely plan them, I don't carry them out all week, I don't do worksheets, and I don't do formal lessons.  Some days we may not do anything that would be considered a typical school experience.  I think I like doing the posts though, because not only does it serve as a journal for me, but it shows me that even without formal lessons, my kids are observing, learning, growing and appreciating the world around them, and that is what is important to me.

Elliott is PreK/5

On Monday we did focus on Martin Luther King, Jr and art.  You can check out Freedom Summer: We're Different on the Outside but not on the Inside to see more about the book we read and the color mixing art activity that lead to this "skin color" discussion.


Then we had an impromptu Seasonal Tree Painting where he did more color mixing and demonstrated his understanding of the effects of the seasons.

Although I created the Shapes and Colors sensory tub for his little brother, Elliott spend some time "leading" the activities and creating shape matching games for them to play together.


We've been reading our way through many of the new (100+) books generously passed down by their older cousins.  Elliott was immediately drawn to the huge stack of Dr. Seuss books!


We also did a Polar Bear Math activity based around the book of the same title.  Not only did we learn about how polar bear cubs are raised by humans when abandoned in captivity, but we also did our own polar bear math and ended with a yummy dessert!



Another in-the-kitchen moment was when he helped daddy make a homemade pizza for the family.


Both boys enjoy these blocks.  I think Elliott was building a wall to go around a castle.


He asked for the pattern blocks when he saw some new patterns I printed out, but by the time I got the blocks out he had forgotten the patterns and wanted to make a snowman!  (We've had an extremely warm winter, so I guess he will take any snowman he can get, since he's not getting a real one!)

This was a precious moment, teaching his little brother how to play a game on the iPad.  It was also my Moments to Remember this week.





14 comments:

  1. Looks like a very fun week! Thanks for sharing!

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  2. I love your polar bear dessert! Very cute!

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  3. My kids also love to help make homemade pizza. I have to make two -- one for each of them!

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    1. My boys already eat so much we probably should start making them their own pizzas!!

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  4. We love homemade pizza too! And your randomness seems working fine. When you're in the mood for a change of pace, there's lots of options. Plus, I think it's wonderful that Elliot gets to be the teacher sometimes too!

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    1. Thank you for the reassurance Carla! I've changed my approach to how I teach preschool at home now, and I know it's not mainstream, but I know it's working for us. My son has a desire to learn, and that is what is important to me!

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  5. Wow! Total score on the books!

    I've enjoyed reading all of your lessons this week, whether they were planned or impromptu isn't really important.

    I do the themes because I enjoy them. I personally doubt Liam cares or notices at this point, but planning and researching things has always been something I've enjoyed.

    Just do what works best for you and your little ones. You're doing great!

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    1. Jenny, thank you for you kind words!!

      I've tried to do themes based unit studies in the past, but I am not organized, and Elliott really resisted the worksheets and coloring pages, so I quit for awhile. When I decided to homeschool and started doing research, I completely changed my approach and we are keeping it informal. He loves "school" now and I can still see a great progress, so I am happy with this approach. My main concern is to make sure he enjoys learning! I just have to remind myself sometimes that it's OK for our way to be different and there's no "right" way to homeschool.

      Oh, and you have no idea how excited I was when I saw all those books! When my sister-in-law said she had "some" books, I was not expecting that many!! But her boys are teenagers now, and that's several years worth of book clubs and scholastic book fairs!

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  6. Jealous of your Dr. Suess books! Wehave six, and they are at the top of our favorites list.

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    1. Allison, I was so very lucky to receive these books for free, and they are already treasured by my kiddos!

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  7. Kuddos to you! I have only started homeschooling my kids a few months ago and I've felt like I had to do some sort of "lesson" with them all the time. I'm not very creative about thinking up stuff to do off the top of my head, but we do have plenty of games and activities that my kids enjoy that they learn plenty from. Thanks for posting this. I am encouraged to not feel so pressured to plan "lessons" all the time. :-)

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    1. Thank you Cynthia, I'm glad that by reassuring myself I've encouraged someone else! :)

      Sometimes I just need to be reminded that it's fine to do things OUR way. There's no way my kids would sit down for an hour every day to do "lessons" but like you said, I know my kids are learning just as much from good books, games, learning activities, nature study and unstructured play.

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  8. Loved reading some of ur homeschooling posts!! That polar bear desert is really cute.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog!

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  9. That's the great thing about homeschooling, there is no mainstream. There is only what works for you and your students. My oldest has always loved work sheets, my youngest is just starting to like them. I love being to tailor my girls education to fit them.

    Popping in from pre-k corner.

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